1 Day In Osaka: The Only Epic Guide You Need

Tenka no Daidokoro or the Nation’s Kitchen perfectly sums up your experience in Osaka. This city has everything from food to shopping to historical and architectural landmarks, this city has it all. The question is, can you see them all with only 1 day in Osaka?

Yes, you can see the highlights of this city in one day. Our guide considers the travel distances between the areas. And, as a bonus, we give you the option to head to Kyoto and visit the 3 must-see landmarks there.

The highlights of our trip are:

  • Osaka Castle
  • Umeda Sky Building
  • Sumiyoshi Grand Shrine
  • Kuromon Ichiba Market
  • Tower of the Sun

Welcome to Osaka or as they say in Japanese, Ōsaka e yōkoso!

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Where is Osaka?

While Osaka is an economic hub, it was once a regional port and an Imperial capital city. Throughout the centuries, the city flourished to become the center of Japanese culture.

With a humid subtropical climate and four seasons, each season brings its charm and continues to attract tourists to this day. The popular downtown and uptown areas are Kita and Minami while the bay area’s prominent attraction is the Universal Studios Japan.

Osaka is also famous for its food and friendly people. From its outgoing and friendly people to the street food capital of Japan, make sure to try okonomiyaki, takoyaki, and kitsune udon before leaving the city.

While Osaka is relatively safe for tourists, some areas are best to avoid after dark. These areas are Kabukicho which is a red-light district, Kamagasaki which is home to Japan’s largest slum, and Roppongi where touts harass and follow tourists to the bars.    

History

The Morinomiya ruins are the earliest settlements in Osaka. The artifacts date back to 7,000 BCE. This was when Osaka was under the Seto Inland Sea. By the 3rd century, the Sumiyoshi Taisha shrine opened to the public. The shrine’s beautiful gardens inspired landscape drawings, called Sumiyoshi drawings. By the Kofun period, Naniwa Port connected Osaka to western Japan.

The Mozu Tombs are the remnants of this era. When the Imperial Capital shifted from Kyoto to Tokyo, Osaka experienced a decline and became an industrial center. Industrialization became rapid when General Motors and Daihatsu set up their factories here.

Osaka suffered massive bombings during World War 2 as the city experienced continuous air raids until the Japanese surrendered to the Allied Forces. As factories rebuilt and trade revived, Osaka was the “Chicago and Toronto of the Orient”.

Today, Osaka is the fifth most expensive to live in the world. The Abeno Harukas which is the tallest skyscraper in Japan opened in Osaka in 2014. 

Visa Requirements

The citizens of China, Russia, Vietnam, the Philippines, Brazil, India, and Qatar would need to apply for an electronic visa to Japan. Citizens from Brunei, Indonesia, and Thailand are granted a 15-day visa on arrival while it is 30-days for the United Arab Emirates.

Citizens from Malaysia, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, South Korea, Singapore, and Norway are some of the countries that are exempt from visas.

For American citizens, a Japanese tourist allows you to stay in the country for up to 90 days, either as a single-entry or double-entry visa. 

Or, you can use the services of iVisa to ensure your visa is filled up correctly and that you can travel to Japan with some peace of mind.

How do you get around in Osaka?

While Osaka is a large city, getting around is easy as it has an efficient public transportation system. You can also get to Kyoto using the Shinkansen which is Japan’s bullet train. 

Trains and Subways

The best way to get around in Osaka is by using trains and subways. The most popular lines for tourists are the Midosuji or Red Line and the Chuo or Green Line. 

The Midosuji Line is from north to south and covers the main tourist areas of Shin-Osaka, Umeda (Kita), Shinsaibashi (Minami), Namba (Minami), and the Tennoji area. The Chuo Line is from east to west and connects the Osaka Castle area to the Osaka Bay area.

Bus

While buses are available in Osaka, they are not the best option to get around for tourists simply because of two reasons. The first reason is that a small change in cash is required. And, secondly, bus maps are only available in Japanese.

Taxi

The second best way to get around Osaka is by using taxis. The taxi drivers here are honest and it is safe to travel in one. The rates start at ¥660 for the first 2 kilometers and an additional ¥80 from 296 meters onwards.

There are three types of taxis available and these are kogata which is a small taxi, chugata which is a medium-sized taxi, and ogata which is the largest of the three. Do note that rates may vary for the size of the taxi you take.

Just as in any other city, you can flag down a taxi and most drivers can converse in English. The meter would be switched on before your journey begins. The taxis in Osaka are equipped with a satellite navigation system which makes it easier for the driver and you to reach your desired destination. 

Osaka Amazing Pass

The Osaka Amazing Pass is a pre-paid card that gives you unlimited rides on the Osaka Metro, railways, and buses within Osaka. The pass also gives you free admission to 40 sightseeing spots, and you have access to discounts at participating stores. 

The rate for a 1-day pass is ¥2,800 ($21) while a 2-day pass costs ¥3,600 ($27) for adults. There are no children’s rates or cards available which means that prices are the same for both adults and children.

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Is one day enough in Osaka?

Yes, one day is enough in Osaka. To save time, you can stay in Minami, Umeda, or Tennoji areas which are easily connected via trains and subways. If you plan on extending your trip, head to Kyoto, the cultural capital of Japan.

Osaka Castle

1 day in Osaka, Osaka Castle, iconic landmark of Osaka
Photo by Fahrul Azmi on Unsplash

The first of our 1 day in Osaka is Osaka Castle. This castle is the iconic landmark of Osaka and has a history that dates back about 450 years. Osaka Castle is historically important as it was the largest castle that was built under a new and unified Japan.

There are two areas within this castle which is the castle itself and the park that surrounds the castle. The park is popular during the sakura or cherry blossom season and the koyo which marks the falling of the leaves season.

When did Osaka Castle fall?

The Fall of Osaka Castle occurred during the Boshin War. This war was between the Imperial Army and Tokugawa shogunate and happened on the 2nd of February, 1868. A new castle was built on the ruins by the new government.

How much does it cost to enter Osaka Castle?

Visitors have free entry to the castle grounds. An entry fee of ¥600 is charged to enter the museum inside the castle. The museum is open from 9 am to 5 pm every day.

Another must-visit is the Nishinomaru Garden at Osaka Castle Park. This park is a popular photography spot during the cherry blossom season. There is an entry fee of ¥200 for adults.

The bloom season for plum blossom is from January to March while the peach blossom is only in March. Cherry blossom bloom begins from late March until mid-April.

Shitennoji

1 day in Osaka, Shittenoji, Temple of Four Heavenly Kings, iconic landmark of Osaka
Photo by Tekhni on Wikipedia Commons

The second of our 1 day in Osaka is Shitennoji or the “Temple of the Four Heavenly Kings”. Although this temple has been rebuilt throughout the centuries, it is regarded as the first and the oldest Buddhist temple in Osaka.

The four main structures of this temple was built in a straight line which reflects the architectural style of the 6th and 7th century. The temple was built by Prince Shotoku for about 1,400 years.

Through the ravages of war and natural disasters, what we see are the reproductions of the original structures. This temple is a 5-minute walk from the Shitennoji-mae Yuhigaoka Station on the Osaka Metro Tanimachi Line.

An entrance fee of ¥300 ($2) is charged for adults who visit the Central Hall and another ¥500 ($4) for the Treasure Hall. An additional ¥300 ($2) is charged to adults who wish to visit the gardens.

Umeda Sky Building

1 day in Osaka, Umeda Sky Building, elevator, iconic landmark of Osaka
Photo by Cody Chan on Unsplash

The third of our 1 day in Osaka is the Umeda Sky Building. This building is one of Osaka’s iconic landmarks that features the Floating Garden Observatory on its 39th floor, the Showa Retro shopping street, and the Kuchu Teien Observatory on its rooftop.

How many floors does Umeda Sky Building have?

The Umeda Sky Building has 40 floors and is the 15th tallest building in Osaka. 

How much does it cost to go to Umeda Sky Building?

The cost to go to the Kuchu Teien Observatory is ¥1,500 ($11) per person while a combination ticket for Kuchu Teien Observatory and the Koji Kinutani Art Museum is ¥2,500 ($18) per person. Children below the age of 4 years enter for free. 

Shinsekai

1 day in Osaka, Shinsekai, Tsutenkaku Tower, Tower That Reaches To Heaven, Osaka, Japan, man cycling in alley
Photo by Kit Ko on Unsplash

The fourth of our 1 day in Osaka is Shinsekai. The highlight of this area is the unobstructed view of Tsutenkaku Tower or the “tower that reaches to heaven.” What is interesting about this neighborhood is its layout.

The northern half was modeled after Paris while the southern half was modeled after Coney Island in New York. And, the tower was created to resemble Eiffel Tower at the top and Arc de Triomphe at its base. 

What does Shinsekai mean?

Shinsekai means “New World” and was developed after the National Industrial Exposition in 1903 which brought more than five million people into the neighborhood. 

Where is Shinsekai?

Shinsekai is an old district that is next to Minami with Tennoji Zoo, Tennoji Park, and the Osaka Museum of Art on its west. Spa World and the now-defunct Festival Gate are at its south.

Sumiyoshi Grand Shrine

1 day in Osaka, Sumiyoshi Grand Shrine, oldest Shinto shrine in Osaka, two ladies walking with umbrella
Photo by Roméo A on Unsplash

The fifth of our 1 day in Osaka is the Sumiyoshi Grand Shrine or Sumiyoshi Taisha as it is locally known. This is one of the oldest Shinto shrines in Osaka and was founded in the 3rd century.

Although the shrine is landlocked, it once faced the sea as it stood watch over Osaka Bay. The shrine houses the three sea gods and the founding Empress of the shrine. Fishermen and those in the maritime would seek blessings from this shrine before embarking on their journeys.

The entrance to the Sumiyoshi Grand Shrine is free. As you walk from the car park, look out for the Onda. This is the Sacred Rice Paddy field that was planted by the legendary empress herself. The rice from these fields is offered to the deities at this temple.

From the main entrance, make your way to the Sorihashi Bridge where crossing this bridge is a process of spiritual purification. From the bridge, you can see the three main shrines which are Daisan Hongū, Daini Hongū, and Daiichi Hongū which are at the heart of Sumiyoshi Taisha. 

Kuromon Ichiba Market

1 day in Osaka, Kuromon Ichiba Market, fish and seafood market in Osaka, colorful Chinese lanterns, Osaka's kitchen
Photo by Roméo A on Unsplash

The sixth of our 1 day in Osaka is the Kuromon Ichiba Market. This fresh market is often nicknamed “Osaka’s Kitchen” as chefs and housewives come here to get their fresh supplies of fish, vegetables, meat, pickles, and confectionery.

There are about 150 stalls within a stretch of 580 meters. And, what we loved about this was that there are about 25 eateries to tempt your tastebuds. As the market is always crowded, be mindful of your personal belongings and do not abruptly stop in the middle.

The market is open from 9 am to 6 pm every day. There is no entrance fee to enter the market. The Kuromon Ichiba Information Center has a space where you can relax complete with toilet facilities. You can keep your belongings in the storage area for a fee.

Tower of the Sun

1 day in Osaka, Tower of the Sun, symbol of Expo '70, Osaka, Japan
Photo by Vien Dinh on Unsplash

The seventh of our 1 day in Osaka is the Tower of the Sun Museum was created by Tarō Okamoto and soon became the symbol for Expo ‘70, the first international fair to be held in Japan.

The three faces of the tower represent the past, present, and future and inside the museum is the “Tree of Life”. This tree is the highlight here as it represents living organisms in all shapes and sizes. From dinosaurs to amoebas, the evolution of life is explained.

What we loved about this cultural landmark is that it teaches us to always look inwards and life, and not toward material gains. 

How much is the entrance fee for the Tower of the Sun?

The entrance fee of the Tower of the Sun Museum and the Japanese Cultural Gardens is ¥930 ($7) for adults. However, the entrance fee for the Tower of the Sun Museum only costs ¥720 ($5) for adults. 

Dotonbori

1 day in Osaka, Dotonbori, shopping and nightlife in Osaka, Dotonbori Canal, Osaka, Japan
Photo by Redd on Unsplash

The eighth of our 1 day in Osaka is Dotonbori. This area runs along Dotonboribashi Bridge to the Nipponbashi Bridge along the Dotonbori canal. Dotonbori is a popular tourist landmark and is known for three things.

The first is the Glico Running Man billboard which is now an icon for Osaka. The second is for its bright-colored neon lights and large and extravagant signages which highlight the area’s food and beverage options. The third is that this is a must-visit shopping district.

A popular phrase that is associated with Dotonbori is “kuidaore” which means to eat until you drop. This phrase emphasizes the area as a major food destination that offers a range of traditional and modern Japanese dishes, from street food to fine dining.

Wagashi

wagashi, Japanese sweets, Osaka, Japan
Photo by Vicky Ng on Unsplash

The ninth and last of our 1 day in Osaka is to have some traditional Japanese sweets or wagashi. These sweets are often paired with green tea and are made in a variety of shapes and sizes.

The oldest wagashi is Yōkan which is made with red bean paste, agar, and sugar. The sweet is hardened into a block form before being cut into pieces for eating. The production method and moisture content are important when making wagashi.

Japanese believe that these sweets reflect the humble and delicate culture of Japan. These sweets are often given as gifts during business or personal trips.

Optional: Kyoto

Kyoto is an important city, culturally and is one of the oldest cities in Japan. It became a capital in 794 as the new seat of Imperial Japan under Emperor Kanmu. While other cities have lost their cultural and historical buildings, Kyoto has a substantial number of buildings.

With over 2,000 temples and shrines and over 30 museums, Kyoto is Japan’s best-preserved historical city. The Aoi Matsuri, Gion Matsuri, and Jidai Matsuri are the 3 renowned festivals that are over 1,000 years old and are still performed today. 

Fushimi Inari Taisha

Fushimi Inari Taisha, Shinto shrine, Inari, God of Rice, vermillion Torii gates, Kyoto, Japan
Photo by David Emrich on Unsplash

The first in our Kyoto day trip is Fushimi Inari Taisha. This is a Shinto shrine that is dedicated to Inari, the God of Rice. However, what draws the crowd to this shrine are the rows of torii gates which are known as Senbon Torii.

The custom of adding the Torii gates began in the 17th century as a mark of gratitude for having prayers answered. Foxes are a popular animal at this shrine and you can see many of their statues dotted all over the shrine. The foxes are symbolic messengers of Inari.

How many steps are there in Fushimi Inari?

There are 12,000 steps with about 10,000 Torii Gates at Fushimi Inari. The climb can take about 2-3 hours as it passes through a forest. The halfway point for hikers is at Yotsutsuji Intersection. Beyond this point, the torii gate density decreases.

How tall is the Fushimi Inari Shrine?

The Fushimi Inari is at the base of Mount Inari which is 233 meters above sea level. The trail to the highest shrine is about 2.5 miles long and is filled with smaller shrines and torii gates.

Why are foxes sacred in Japan?

Foxes are sacred in Japan because they are portrayed as trusted guardians, friends, and lovers. The Shinto Kami spirit serves as a messenger for Goddess Inari. There are many legends and folklore associated with these sacred foxes in Japan. 

Is Fushimi Inari Taisha free?

Yes, Fushimi Inari Taisha is free. Do note that this is an active shrine and the torii gates are an instagrammable attraction in Kyoto, be prepared for large crowds at any time of the day.

Kinkaku-Ji Temple

Kinkaku-Ji Temple, Temple of the Golden Pavillion, Kyoto, Japan
Photo by Ice Tea on Unsplash

The second in our Kyoto day trip is a visit to the Kinkaku-Ji Temple or the Temple of the Golden Pavillion. Kinkaku-Ji’s earliest history dates back to 1397 when the private villa of a stateman was purchased by Ashikaga Yoshimitsu.

After his death, the villa was converted into a Zen temple. While there are many other structures within the area, it is the Golden Pavillion that brings droves of tourists to this tranquil place.

How much does it cost to go to kinkakuji?

It costs ¥400 ($4) for an adult to enter the Kinkaku-Ji area. The rates for primary and middle school children are ¥300 ($2). The temple is open from 9 am to 5 pm with limited parking space. There are separate parking fees for cars, buses, and motorcycles.

Can you enter kinkajuji?

No, you can’t enter the Kinkaku-Ji temple premises. You can only take photos from the outside and walk in the surrounding area. 

Who burned down kinkakuji?

Hayashi Yoken, a novice monk burned the Kinkaku-Ji temple which destroyed the temple because of its symbolic beauty. Although the monk was jailed, he was released as he was mentally ill. 

Arashiyama Bamboo Forest

Arashiyama Bamboo Forest, Kyoto, Japan
Photo by Jeremy Goldberg on Unsplash

The third and last in our Kyoto day trip is Arashiyama Bamboo Forest. This forest is a natural bamboo forest that is located near the Tenryū-Ji temple. With endless rows of bamboo, it feels as if you are walking in a serene space.

The best time to visit the Arashiyama Bamboo Forest is when the weather is windy as this gives the place a dreamlike atmosphere. The best way to experience the forest is to hop on a rickshaw tour of the forest

What kind of bamboo is in Arashiyama?

The bamboo in Arashiyama is known as Moso Bamboo. This giant bamboo is native to China and Taiwan. Moso bamboo is unique in that it can survive cold temperatures as low as -15°C and can reach a maximum height of 92 feet.

Is Arashiyama Bamboo Grove free?

Yes, entry to Arashiyama Bamboo Grove is free. The forest is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. As this forest is busy during peak periods, it is best to visit early in the day or in the evening. 

What does Arashiyama mean in Japanese?

Arashiyama in Japanese means “storm mountain”. This is the majestic mountain that forms a backdrop against the Oi River in the district. 

Where should I stay in Osaka for the first time?

Umeda

Our first district of choice for our 1 day in Osaka is Umeda. This is Osaka’s main commercial, shopping, business, and entertainment hub. This is the place to be to experience Osaka’s food scene. You can also explore the Umeda Sky Building, take a ride on the Ferris Wheel, and view the spectacular night scene at Kuchu Tein Observatory

We have curated our top 3 hotels to stay in Umeda that are within walking distance of the Umeda Station

Intercontinental Hotel

Our first hotel for a 1 day in Osaka is the Intercontinental Hotel which is a 272-room hotel. This hotel is a 5-minute walk from the JR Osaka Station and an 8-minute walk to the Umeda Station on the Midosuji Line. The hotel is within walking distance of the Umeda Sky Building and Nakatsu Shopping Street.

All rooms come with panoramic views of the Kansai area, free WiFi, marble bathrooms, and a separate rain shower. The other room amenities include an ironing board with an iron, a safety deposit box, and an air purifier. Bath salts are also provided for a relaxing evening.

Some positive reviews mention the beautiful room and wonderful view and convenient location. Guests also praised the friendly and helpful staff and that the staff could speak English which made communication easier.

Ritz-Carlton

Our second hotel for a 1 day in Osaka is the Ritz-Carlton Hotel which is a 292-room that would take you back in time to 18th century Europe, in Osaka. The hotel blends British flair with a Japanese aesthetic where rooms are designed in 18th-century Georgian style decor.

The glowing positive reviews include the excellent staff, delightful breakfast, and excellent views from the rooms. Guests also loved the outstanding service and clean and lovely rooms.

Harmonie Embrassee

Our third hotel for a 1 day in Osaka is the Harmonie Embrassee which is a 40-room hotel that is a 3-minute walk to the Hankyu Umeda Station and a 10-minute walk to the JR Osaka Station. This 4-star hotel has 5 rooms per floor with each room designed according to different color schemes.

The spacious rooms come with a balcony with city views, a humidifier combined with an air purifier, a DVD player, a Nespresso machine, and a minibar. The Tsunashikiten Shrine Otabisha is 200 meters from the hotel.

Some positive reviews mention the excellent English speak staff who go above and beyond to ensure the comfort of the guests, the clean rooms, and the comfortable bed. Guests also loved the balcony and awesome night views from the rooms.

Minami

Our second district for our 1 day in Osaka is Minami. This is the center of town and is the second hub after Umeda. The area is known for its nightlife, and shopping, and is a popular stop for the younger crowds. A must-see here is the Dotonbori Canal which flows through the area. 

The “American Village” or Amemura is also in the area. Amemura got its nickname when the vendors here used to sell American goods such as vintage records and clothes from the United States. Being a popular district, deciding where to stay can be a problem, which is why we have chosen our 3 best hotels to stay in Minami. 

Miyako City

Our first hotel in Minami for 1 day in Osaka is the Miyako City Hotel which is a 308-room hotel. The hotel comes with large windows while some rooms come with balconies for that beautiful city view. This hotel is within walking distance to a convenience store and an automated teller machine.

The Standard rooms come with complimentary WiFi, a work desk, and air-conditioning while the Superior rooms come with complimentary WiFi, a safety deposit box, toiletries, and a hair dryer. 

Some positive reviews mention the friendly staff, clean hotel, and easy accessibility to a metro or train station. Other reviews mention the large bathroom and comfortable beds. Guests also loved the lounge with free drinks and the balcony in some rooms.

Citadines Namba

Our second hotel in Minami for 1 day in Osaka is the Citadines Namba Hotel which is a 313-apartment residence that comes with complimentary WiFi, an ensuite bathroom, and air-conditioning. The various room types include Studio, Family Room, and two-bedroom apartments.

The amenities include a restaurant, gym, children’s playroom, laundrette, and a residents lounge. Some positive reviews mention the big and clean rooms, the friendly, and helpful staff as well as the bright and clean rooms. Guests also loved that this hotel is perfect for long stays as it comes with a kitchen that is complete with pots, pans, and cutleries. 

Hotel Nikko

Our third hotel for 1 day in Osaka is the Hotel Nikko which is a 603-room hotel that is strategically located along the Shinsaibashi Metro line which is an easy 8-minute train ride to Umeda, a 2-minute train to Namba, and an easy 8-minutes to Tennoji. This makes it one of the most accessible hotels in Osaka.

Other than the convenience of the metro, the hotel is within 15-minute walking distance of Americamura, Midosuji Brand Street, and Dotonbori. Some positive reviews mention the excellent central location, the attentive and helpful staff as well as the nice and clean rooms.

Guests also loved the delicious breakfast and spacious rooms as well as the fact that there are plenty of restaurants and shops near the hotel. 

Tennoji

Our third and last district of choice for 1 day in Osaka is Tennoji. The Tennoji Ward was named after Shitenno-Ji Temple or the Temple of the Four Heavenly Kings which is an easy 10-minute walk from the Tennoji Station. The other attractions in this area are Tennoji Park and the Shinto shrine, Ikukunitama.

This area has shopping centers that are primarily targeted at the younger generation. However, there is plenty of food and beverage outlets for the foodies in us. That being said, we have chosen our 3 recommended hotels to stay in Tennoji.

Marriott Miyako

The Osaka Marriott Miyako Hotel is a 282-room 5-star hotel that occupies the 38th to 57th floors of the Abeno Harukas building which is one of the tallest buildings in Osaka. This only means that you are guaranteed to have stunning views everywhere you go in this hotel.

All rooms have complimentary WiFi, a coffee machine, a safety deposit box, and an electric kettle. What we loved about it were the floor-to-ceiling windows which gave us a beautiful panoramic view of the city.

Some positive reviews mention the sweeping views, professional staff, and impeccable service. Guests also loved the convenient location which is above a shopping complex.

Sheraton Miyako

The Sheraton Miyako is a 4-star hotel with 578-air conditioned rooms, complimentary WiFi, a minibar, a safety deposit box, a work desk, and premium bedding. The hotel is near Kintetsu rail which connects to Nara and Kyoto and is above the Airport Limousine Bus Terminal.

Some positive reviews mention the clean rooms, comfortable beddings, polite staff, and convenient location. Another review mentions the large rooms and comfortable beds. The downside is that the beds may be hard for some and the facilities are old and dated.

Hotel Bali Tower

The Hotel Bali Tower is a 260-room Balinese-themed hotel that is a short walk from the JR Tennoji station. The unique selling point of this hotel is that you are not checking in for a conventional hotel room stay.

You can expect free mochi and jelly, and maybe free lunch if you win at a game during check-in. The usual amenities such as complimentary WiFi, television, and a hairdryer are provided. Some rooms come with a massage chair. Now, isn’t that cool?

Some positive reviews mention the exceptionally polite and helpful staff, comfortable bed, convenient location, and spotlessly clean rooms. Guests also loved the free spa, toiletries, bath salts, wine, and snacks. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on Osaka

We hope you find the information helpful.

How many seasons does Osaka have?

Osaka has four seasons which are spring, summer, autumn, and winter. The overall temperatures are humid with mild winters, and hot and rainy summers. There is also a fifth season which is the monsoon season that brings rainfall from May to October.

Do they speak English in Osaka?

Yes, the people of Osaka can speak English. You can find English speakers in and around the popular tourist areas, hotels, and guides. Do note that it is polite to learn a few words of basic Kansai-ben which is the dialect of Osaka. Osaka-ben is a local dialect that is different from the Japanese that we are used to hearing. 

When buying your souvenirs, you might hear the term kore nanbo which means, “how much does this cost?” or maido osewa ni narimasu which replaces Konichiwa

Does it snow in Osaka?

Light snow is common during the winter months of December to February with January and February having the highest snowfall with an average of 10mm. It is unlikely you will experience heavy snowfall beyond February.

What is the best month to go to Osaka?

The best months to go to Osaka are during the spring months from March to May and during the autumn months from September to November. During these months, you can expect pleasant weather making it the busiest season for tourists.

What type of climate is Osaka?

Osaka has a humid subtropical climate with four distinct seasons. The winters are mild while summers are hot and humid. Abundant rainfall during June and July is common as Osaka is protected from summer monsoons due to its location along the coast of the Seto Inland Sea.

What is the culture like in Osaka?

The culture of Osaka is more down-to-earth, and friendly, and a city where food is the highlight. As the people are from a trade background, the atmosphere is lively, entertaining, and jovial as people gather over oodles of udon, okonomiyaki, and takoyaki. 

How do you respond to Konichiwa?

The best response to Konichiwa would be Konichiwa. This term is a semi-formal and short greeting used throughout the day. The complete meaning is konnichi wa gokigen igaka desu ka which means “how are you feeling today?”.  

How do you respond to arigato?

Dou itashimashite which translates to “you’re welcome” is the most common reply to arigato. A polite phrase would be Tondemonai desu which translates to “don’t mention it”. A formal reply would be Oyauki ni tatete ureshii desu which means “I’m glad I could be of help.”

Is it rude to just say arigato?

Yes, it is rude to just say arigato. However, this term is fine, so long as you use it in a friendly and casual environment. The more polite term would be arigato gozaimas which means “thank you” while domo arigato gozaimas means “thank you very much”.

What is ohayo?

Ohayo is an informal term for “good morning”, a formal and polite greeting would be ohayo gozaimas. The term is derived from “hayai” which means early. The prefix “O” is added as a form of respect and a sign of politeness.

Is Osaka worth visiting?

Yes, here’s why we think it is worth visiting. 

  1. Food. Osaka’s nickname is Tenka no Daidokoro which means “the nation’s kitchen”. Osaka has been Japan’s rice hub since the early 17th century. The must eats include okonomiyaki, kitsune udon, and takoyaki.  
  2. The People. It is the people who make the city and Osaka rings true. The people here are friendly, brash, and easy-going. Fun Fact: Osaka is the center of Japanese comedy with Yoshimoto Kogyo establishing his center here.
  3. Time travel. Take you time and travel to the Open Air Museum of Old Japanese Farmhouses where eleven authentic Edo-style houses were reassembled in the park.
  4. Shopping. With all major shopping streets connected via train stations, you can shop till you drop. Tennoji and Namba are the major shopping centers while Amemura or America Town is where you go for vintage and funky shops
  5. Tradition blends with modernity. Osaka is a perfect harmony of country charm with urban diversity with the age-old Tenjin Matsuri that is practiced since the 10th century continues till today. 

Food, fun, and nightlife are the three words that perfectly describe Osaka. From high-end fine dining restaurants to vibrant nightlife and the cherry blossoms in spring, you will not regret having spent 1 day in Osaka.